Monday, September 6, 2021

My "MS Paint TTRPG Jam" Challenge

Well, we're a week past the end of #RPGaDay2021 and I need something else to do. Time for my first RPG Jam!

Over the last few years has become a fairly popular place for indie table top RPG creators to post up their work, even if it is more dominated by indie video games. One of the fun things about the place is that sometimes folks will start up "jams", where people are challenged to create a piece of work within a time limit. Usually that piece of work has a theme or set of limitations specific to the jam. It's a way to get some community happening, check out what other people are doing, and also motivate people who could use some motivation to produce. Anyways, about a week back Ian Yusum proposed an "MS Paint TTRPG Jam" that kicks off on 09/14 and runs for two weeks until 09/28. The idea is that you start making the RPG (or adventure, or whatever RPG related thing you want to make) when the start date hits, and you use good ol' MS Paint to do all of the art and layout, and kinda everything. It's definitely gonna produce a certain aesthetic!

Why am I doing this? Well, like a lot of role-players, I like to fiddle about with rules and systems. Also, there are games I've thought were great or had great ideas that have gone out of print and are no longer available. Rather that just type up my own half formed ideas over and over, but never really move them forward past a certain point, I thought committing to this jam might convince me to take some ideas further. I'm being public about it, so it adds that "Do I want to fail at a thing I publicly committed to?" factor to proceedings. This seems to have worked for #RPGaDay2021, so maybe it can work here!

Anyways... what is my plan? Well, when I heard about it I opened up MS Paint, checked what the default system fonts were, and experimented with mocking some things up. Here are a couple pix I produced:

(Possible Game Title?)

(Vague Page Layout Ideas)

No surprise if you know me. It looks like I'm aiming for an RPG inspired by "Beat 'em Up" games! My inspirations are definitely the White Wolf Street Fighter RPG, a dice mechanic I came up with ages ago that produces multiple levels of success, and a desire to keep the rules that are non-essential to the concept of the game nice and minimal. I mean, with only 2 weeks I'm figuring the best I'll be able to do will amount to a funny draft version that I will hopefully later firm up and flesh out, but I'm really hoping to get something nice and play-test ready made! If I'm lucky, the game will be satisfying for emulating any kind of beat 'em up, fighting game, wrestling & a decent amount of side-scrolling action while also totally being an RPG, but that's pretty ambitious. Better to keep to myself with the most ambitious of dreams, then "Show, don't tell" with what I produce at the end of this thing.

Hopefully I'll end up with some fun material to show you. Best of luck in whatever RPG endeavors you are currently up to. Also... if you're feeling bold, feel free to jump on in and try the jam with me! We've all got to start somewhere!

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